Book of the Month

Dancing During the Storm Vol 2

Dancing During The Storm is a collection of short stories that represent people dealing with the storms of life. There are times when we have to decide are we going to lay down or fight. All of these stories tell of people who are either coming out of, in the middle of or going into a storm. In this second volume, the stories deal with justice, women’s issues and deception.

Available on Amazon

or Books2Read.com

Book of the Month

Welcome to December and a new book. Dancing During the Storm Vol 2

Dancing During The Storm is a collection of short stories that represent people dealing with the storms of life. There are times when we have to decide are we going to lay down or fight. All of these stories tell of people who are either coming out of, in the middle of or going into a storm. In this second volume, the stories deal with justice, women’s issues and deception.

Available on Amazon

or Books2Read.com

Book of the Month

Privateers

A single young woman is tricked by modern day pirates losing everything she owned. As she tries to figure out what happened to her belongings, her world crashes around her as government and private agencies treat her as a suspect. Determined to find the man who did this to her, she stumbles onto a government top secret. Finding this modern day pirate turns into a race against lethal forces.

Available on Amazon

or Books2Read.com

The Story

Book of the Month

Privateers

A single young woman is tricked by modern day pirates losing everything she owned. As she tries to figure out what happened to her belongings, her world crashes around her as government and private agencies treat her as a suspect. Determined to find the man who did this to her, she stumbles onto a government top secret. Finding this modern day pirate turns into a race against lethal forces.

Available on Amazon

or Books2Read.com

The Story

They Inspire Me

I have spent the last couple of weeks drawing. I have done over 30 images of women who inspire me by the way they live their lives. They have supported me in all sorts of ways. Drawing all of them has been hard. I have literally worked until I couldn’t look at a computer screen. My eyes grew cloudy and burned continuously late into the night.  I have learned how to handle new details of how to make each drawing better. As I learned new things, I had to resist the urge to go back and do it to the drawings I had already completed.

I have written stories about how these women’s lives have pushed me on. It is such a blessing to live in a community where there is good life. You are surrounded by good life, just step outside yourself and see.

This woman here is good at everything she does. She dances. She draws. She helps others. She loves her family. I love watching her life because when it is all said and done, life will be broke and she will be rich. She is using it all.

Keisha

 

Thankful

What an incredible life we get to lead.  We live during a pivotial time in history where God is doing amazing things.  In a time full of darkness, I have seen things that give me hope.

The thing that makes me giggle, and I am very grateful for is that God does not forget our prayers even when we forget. This year I was reminded of how I prayed to be surrounded by people who pray big prayers and believe God more than a decade ago.  This year I was surrounded by a church standing up to do that exact thing. It is exciting and scary at the same time. It is exciting to watch God work, yet it is scary as you step on that limb and walk toward the edge.

This has been a transition year for me as I teach my daughter to adult and begin my own personal journey. I am thankful for the blessing God has given me in both areas.  Again, I was surprised at what I could do when I surrendered to God’s leading.

I am so grateful for phenomal the people God placed in my life this year. They have been His Hands, His Feet, His Voice, His Encouragement, His Strength and much more.  My favorite moment was when I couldn’t hear. I didn’t have insurance. I didn’t have cash.  Some folks I love stepped in the gap.

If you never need anything, and no one ever helps you, you will miss the mightiest blessing of all. It provides for a need, but what it does for the heart is more powerful.

But the thing that gives me hope is that people are seeking God.  They are not seeking a church or a minister, but the One who Created the Universe. I sit in BSF and wonder where did all these women come from.  There are so many new women, I seldom see the people I have known for years. This gives me hope.

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Twitter gives me hope. Unlike the rest of the world that puts up with nonsense,  twitter will take a stupid idea and beat it with a baseball bat. Like the word of God, it is a sword that separates joints and marrow, soul and spirit.  In 140 characters, it reveals the heart of the writer. I met some amazing hopefilled hearts on there.

My prayer this year has been, if I ask for bread, the Lord will not give me a stone.  He has been faithful. I am thankful. I praise Him for the journey..

I wish you and yours the best of Thanksgiving,

Peace and Hair Grease

 

Stop Letting Anybody Be Your Friend

God designed us to live in community. These are the people who influence our lives and shape our existence. They either build us up or tear us down.

The biggest struggle I have had in my life is letting “anybody” in my life and giving them influence in how I live. Let me say this is a terrible idea because as God rips these people from your life you wonder what did you do wrong. Truth is you became attached to something that was not good for you.  These people steer you the wrong way.

John Simmons of Rush Creek did a great job on the subject this past Sunday. He said friends are not to make you FEEL good, but to make you DO good.

 

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Like this flower with missing petals . It is still a flower. It can do what flowers do, just not to its full capacity. That is how we are. We are learning to get by on what we got instead of operating the way God intended us. Our power comes in numbers.

Based on the list of Wise Friends and Foolish Friends, I had the opportunity this week to evaluate my friendships. People who I thought I knew, I didn’t know.  But the process helped me put them in their proper place.  When people show you who they are, believe them.

Just because someone loves Jesus doesn’t mean they love you. Let me say this again.  When Jesus accepts people into his family, He didn’t say you can only get in if you stop being a racist.

He said whoever believes in me will have everlasting life (John 3:16).

The good news is that we will have perfect bodies and attitudes when we get to heaven and these times won’t even be a memory.  I love the song that says “He will take the darkness from our eyes.”

Until then, I will unfriend and block all racist attitudes. What they will miss are the amazing treasures God gives me that I share will others. It is the price they pay.  If the Lord can hand them over to their darkness, so can I.

And on the other hand, I encountered people who make me better.  At Rush Creek we believe in living life together in Lifegroups.  The people who went beyond anything I could have ever imagined. They walked the talk. I hear God saying that if I let Him chose my friends, He will give me life abundantly. He picks wise friends who know and fear Him. I am overwhelmed by His grace.

God’s grace surrounds us, but with tragedy all around us we can miss it. One of the things I noticed out of all the tragedy this week came something amazing. Imagine if there had been a time to get Abraham, Isaiah, Moses and David all together under one roof and have them speak to the awesomeness of our God.

There was a moment this week when amazing men of God came together to fill everyone with hope. How incredible!

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What Satan meant to destroy us, God used to unite us in an incredible way. These men influence a community towards love. God is getting some glory out of this.

Stop fighting those people God is pulling out of your life. They are not good for you. Surround yourself with people who make you better. You need people in your life you remind you to have compassion for others.  Those who will cry with you.

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Where Do You Look?

The best thing we can share with one another is our stories. The Lord has written out each of our lives so that it flows perfectly with His plan. He made sure that we intersect in the right places with the right people. It is our own fault if we do not recognize them. These interactions give us juice to move on to the next stop.

The Lord has given me a wealth of family, friends and acquaintances. It is one of the things I love about Facebook. I can experience moments from their lives in a way I have not before. I have seen birthdays, weddings and vacations. One person is watching the Lion King on Broadway, while another is chasing water falls in the Appalachians. Watching people live everyday in spite of life inspires me. God knew that together we would build each other up, but He also knew we would console one another because their are also losses, frustrations and disappointments.

I love celebrating with my friends as they drop their kids off at college, some for the first time. I can’t wait to see the first day of school photos on Monday. I remember most of these kids from when they were babies.

I am inspired by the stories I see. I am also inspired by the ones I hear.

This week I got the opportunity to sit and talk with people. One of the best things I learned was a woman wanted a Sunday School class for women over 80.  She started it and now they have regular attendance by women in that age range.  Can you imagine the conversation in a room full of women over 80 years old? I have been blessed to have many older, wiser women in my life. Yet I have never had the opportunity to call on that type of wisdom.

This tells me that until you are dead, it is not too late to start anything.

Who inspires you?

Community

This week I was reminded that we are to live as a community, supporting one another.

This week I got the opportunity to love on a friend of mine as she mourned the loss of her father. I understand her grief as I continue to mourn the recent loss of my mother. Grief is a journey you can get lost on if you are not careful. I believe that is why God has us in communities of people, so that we can support each other as we go through this process.

I have a high priest who understands this type of pain. Although the story is not in the Bible, it is implied that He understands the loss of a parent because his earthly father, Joseph was not around during the time of Jesus’ ministry on earth. Jesus gets this journey on earth and knows that we are better together.  It is the second greatest commandment: love your neighbor as yourself.

God blessed me with the opportunity to know not only the daughter, but the mother as well. Over the last couple of years, I got to know her mother while serving in leadership with her working for God’s kingdom. It took me a while to make the connection that I was serving with my friend’s mother. But I was not surprised because awesome women create more awesome women.

I went to bless them, and they were the blessing to me. When times are hard, the Lord will send a community of believers to hold you up. Let them.  We mourn together. We laugh together. We pray together. Each day He give us what we need. Each other. We are much stronger than we think we are.